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“Not what we expected!”
Review of Franklin Park Zoo

Franklin Park Zoo
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Ranked #91 of 389 things to do in Boston
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Attraction details
Owner description: Franklin Park Zoo is home to incredible animals from around the globe. Visitors can stand face-to-face with the Zoo's seven western lowland gorillas at one of five glass viewing stations in the state-of-the-art indoor exhibit. Also, be sure to also visit the African lions in the Kalahari Kingdom, the tigers in the Tiger Tales exhibit, the Masai giraffe, the Grevy's zebra on the Giraffe Savannah and the many other remarkable species that call the Zoo home. During the summer months, enjoy Butterfly Landing and Aussie Aviary.
Useful Information: Food available for purchase, Activities for young children, Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children
Dayton, Ohio
Level Contributor
140 reviews
52 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Not what we expected!”
Reviewed 9 August 2014

We've been to many zoos across the US and internationally, and we thought this zoo would be comparable to some of the best we've seen. Well, not the case. This zoo was pretty small and the set up was very lower scale. The exhibits were okay. Not that many animals. I guess because of Boston, we expected something that would amaze us. It's nice for a short trip; only took us two hours to go through the whole zoo. There are plenty of things for young children to play on (typical jungle-gym stuff).

Visited August 2014
Thank tibunifamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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321 reviews from our community

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Wakefield, Rhode Island
Level Contributor
102 reviews
49 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
“Nice medium-sized zoo!”
Reviewed 3 August 2014

We visited the Franklin Park Zoo this past week. It was the 2nd time we came here, the first being 2-3 years ago. It's a great little zoo that is quite manageable in less than a day, and has many very nice exhibits. We (2 seniors and one adult) were here with teen & almost-teen aged kids.

Some of the highlights for our group were: (1) the "Aussie Aviary" where you are in a screened-in enclosure with hundreds of "budgies" that fly all around and happily land on you, especially if you are holding one of the $2/each seed sticks. It was a lot of fun for all of us, especially the kids who were never without several birds on them, all vying for some of those yummy seeds on their sticks!

(2) Kalahari Kingdom has a lone male lion (used to have 2 but one has died since our last trip); for the most part, this one "elderly" lion sleeps, so that is likely what you are going to see him doing! However, if you are lucky, as we were, he periodically arises and ROARS for some 30 seconds to a minute or so. Apparently he is telling everyone that this is his territory!! You can hear the roar even if you are not near the exhibit but if you are near the area, it's pretty cool to watch him "in action"!

(3) Tiger Tales has an orange and a white tiger. They too are pretty much sleeping or resting during the day but we did get to see them moving around a bit. They are gorgeous!

(4) Tropical Forest is an enclosed large building housing a rain forest, where you see many interesting animals including gorillas, lemurs, capybara, mandrills, and more. It's a nice, well-maintained building and a nice break from the sun, although it is the rain forest so it's not super cool & it is humid!

There are many many more animals to see but I focused on some of the highlights for us. There's butterfly exhibit, giraffes, kangaroos, many exotic cranes & other large birds, an amur leopard, lots of small critters, zebras, etc. In addition, during the course of the day, there are several "zoo encounters" with various animals such as giraffes, birds, gorillas, etc, which we did not do, so I cannot comment on them.

There is an extra attraction that costs additional $$ if you want to visit it. It's the "Rhino Rescue 6D". We paid for and did that - kids loved it, adults tolerated it!! Is it worth $5? Not sure, but we did it!!

As for food available at the zoo, it's typical zoo fare, and rather expensive - we spent close to $60 for lunch for 5 people (no extras, just sandwiches, fries and drinks). Probably worth packing a picnic lunch and maybe just buying a drink or an ice cream there.

The Franklin Park Zoo is the zoo where they filmed the movie, "The Zookeeper", that came out a few years ago. Last time we were here, there were lots of references to this movie all over the zoo. I didn't see that so much this trip. But the movie was cute & it's fun to go to the zoo where it was made!

The Franklin Park Zoo is a "sister" zoo to another in the area - the Stone Zoo. We have not been to that zoo as yet. But if you live close enough to these zoos, it may be worth your while to become a member. It only takes about 2 visits to equal the cost of membership and if you have kids (or grandkids) or just like zoos, take a look at the benefits of membership.

Parking is limited but not really a problem. We found parking within a short distance to the entrance. We had a fun day and I recommend this zoo. You can definitely see most or all of the zoo in one leisurely day.

Visited August 2014
2 Thank DianeD1946
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dulles, Virginia
Level Contributor
25 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Not user friendly”
Reviewed 31 July 2014

We went to Franklin Park Zoo for the first time with 4 year old grandson. There was a typical variety of animals, including some babies. In the middle of the zoo was a fantastic playground with sections for two different age groups. However, the zoo was difficult to navigate because of poor or no signage, an inaccurate map, information on the website that was wrong and employees who did not seem to have information. We bought tickets on-line and then used the receipt on our phone to get in. This made no difference at the gate because they didn't have a scanner there and I would not recommend. Since it's quite expensive to get in we will. OT go back.

Visited July 2014
1 Thank Barbara H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lincoln, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
144 reviews
32 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
“Great visit”
Reviewed 30 July 2014 via mobile

Despite living in the Boston area for 47 years, I had never visited Franklin Park zoo until I took our 6 year old grandaughter at the end of June. (I had taken our children to another area zoo when they were little, and it was very depressing. We crossed zoos off our list of things to do.)

Franklin Park Zoo is a huge park. The highlight was (for $5/person) feeding the giraffe from a tall platform. The staff person was extremely knowledgeable and skillful in answering questions and we learned a great deal about giraffes. She obviouslybloved her job and the giraffes.

My grandaughter also enjoyed the playground.

We were there on a weekday, the last day of school, and it was not crowded.

All the staff people we met were particularly helpful (as in going out of thier way to answer questions and show us things) and courteous.

It was a lovely day. We brought our own picnic.

1 Thank Auroraam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
138 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 114 helpful votes
“Expensive for what's there”
Reviewed 24 July 2014

Why do you have to stand in line for 1/2 hour to get in on a busy summer weekend with one person in the booth while three people sit near by with no line letting in members? Went with our 16 month grandson who got enjoyment from the small pet exhibits but not sure how much we got out of the larger animals fenced in. Park seemed clean, it's on the small side with a few exhibit areas empty. Guess I would have felt better about spending $15-20 instead of $36 to get in. The golf course across the street got my attention!

Visited July 2014
3 Thank ball82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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